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Jul 26, 4:53 AM EDT

Iraqi police: Baghdad official taken by gunmen


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BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraqi police officers say gunmen traveling in 10 black SUVs have seized the head of the Baghdad Provincial Council.

The two officers say Riyadh al-Adhdah, a Sunni medical doctor and member of the Iraqi Islamic Party, was taken away late Friday in Baghdad's Azamiyah district. It was not immediately clear whether he was arrested by security forces or abducted. The police officers spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to brief the media.

In 2012, al-Adhdah was imprisoned for eight months on terrorism charges.

The provincial councils are the highest of the four tiers of local government in Iraq established following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled former President Saddam Hussein.

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Associated Press reporter Murtada Faraj in Baghdad contributed to this report.

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